, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Make It Work: Hot Tub Repair

With a background and a degree in theatre, as well as years of home projects, I often have encountered “make it work” situations. My experiences in electrical and plumbing have allowed me to undertake projects that I would have never attempted as a young man.

A “Make It Work” project is a significant repair or build that is not done by a professional, nor done with a major budget. It is a project that involves adaptation and usually requires resolving several issues that are not part of the standard procedure. 

I just completed a major repair on our hot tub (spa) and created a video that records the steps taken to replace several worn out key components. 

Balboa Water Group:  The Customer is the Enemy

The most significant challenge of this project was the anti-customer relations of the Balboa Water Group. Balboa was the company that made the controller that failed and the replacement. Their philosophy of support is to only deal with spa technicians and shun customers.

That philosophy is understandable as spa technicians require less interaction in troubleshooting a problem because of the technician’s familiarity with hot tubs. Customers require more explanation and are more time consuming. Because of the plumbing and electrical issues associated with a hot tub, most people rely on a professional technician to deal with any spa problems.

However, the customer is the person that actually purchases the product (one way or another) and the company should have some accountability to the customer. Balboa tech support is so anti-customer, the phone maze actually hangs up on the customer once the person identifies themselves as a customer, not a technician.

Fortunately, they will take emails from a customer, and tech support called me almost immediately after I sent an email, but the attitude of the support person was that I needed to hire a professional. He did give me enough information that I was able to know what to test, but he was elusive in giving me direct answers to my questions.

Their lack of cooperation and the confusing electrical design of the Balboa control board was responsible for about one-quarter of the time involved on this project.